Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Rockwall City Council 18 April

It's a two-fer! Posting 2 on same day, so don't miss the meeting from April 4th right here.

Executive Action.

1. 380 Agreement between city and Murphy Building Ltd. 7-0. Read about 380 agreements!
2. Harbor Heights investor (I think that's what I wrote) agreement. 7-0.

III. Proclamations.

1. Sons of the American Revolution. Three guys gave out some awards:

Law Enforcement Commendation to Sgt Jeff Welch.

Fire Safety Commendation to Ariana Hargrove.

And ________ _________ awared for EMS service. (Missed name, former councilman running for mayor distracted me.)

James Cullins for proper flag etiquette.

2. Little girl raised $5000 for American Heart Association. Read about it here.

3. Rockwall Environmental Action Day (aka Hazard Waste You Can Stop Putting Down The Drain or Burying Day) is April 30th. More here.

IV. Consent Agenda.

1. Passed 7-0. (Minutes)

2. Ramp closure off I-30 east of SH-205 for the Classic Rock Rotary Sprint Triathalon on May 15th. Won't be as inconveniencing to citizens as the event last year was.

V. Appointments.

1. P&Z Chair Herbst. One item withdrawn, voted to allow winery in Harbor, first change in plan to first building at PD-32.

2. Former councilman Stephen Straughn introduced the new Chief Professional Officer for the Rockwall Boys and Girls Club. Lots of upcoming plans to make the club more educational and cannot do without the city's $$help$$.

3. Issue about parking in Meadowcreek Estates, no show.

4. Extension of SUP for BigTex Trailers for 3 more years. Passed 7-0

VI. Public Hearing Items.

1. Winery coming to the Harbor. Will be making some wines (all from Texas grapes) and selling all Texas wines. Passed 7-0 with one councilmember offering "Congratulations." for the applicant getting the SUP passed by council.

2. Change to first office building going up at PD-32. Proposed change includes a restaurant on the top floor. Passed 7-0.

3. Front yard fence built without permit from city or permission from council. Contractor said "all would taken care of" but all wasn't - he got a citation. Neighbors ok with fence. Passed 4-3 (Scott, Sevier, and Farris opposed).

4. TIF stuff changing on PD-32, waiting on meeting with TIF board to be held on May 2nd. Tabled.

VII. Action Items.

1. Show cause hearing to demolish house at 470 Nicole. Onwer has failed to respond to certified letters and has 90 days or blammo. Passed 7-0.

2. Long discussion about adding congregate care facilities. Seemed to be a lot of confusion from council on what congregate means and who wants what and when they want it and what is already in the code and how it works. (Hard to hear when you don't listen.) Anyhoo, city has had some inquiries into this type of facility, and code must be changed to allow it.

Motion made to allow this type of facility with SUP passed 5-2 (Sevier opposed - didn't want to force SUP, wanted in code along with already allowed uses like Nursing homes, assisted living, etc. Russo also opposed.)

3. Airport Road bond issuance. Passed 7-0.

4. Tabled to May 16th when the voting pool will be favorable to passage. (Some council were either expected to be absent at this meeting or the next, and the theory was if the super majority wasn't present, the motion would have failed. "Vote stacking" was a term used.)

For the people!

Rockwall City Council 4 April

Sorry for the grand delay - campaigning does take considerable time!

Executive actions:

1. "Real property change with Gibson Family". Passed 7-0. Me neither.
2. $5000 approved for sewer stuff. Passed 7-0.
3. Easement agreement. Passed 7-0.
4. Reappointment to water board. 7-0.

III. Open Forum.

No one. C'mon folks!

VIII. Action Items.

1. No vote on bond thingy. These votes pass on first reading - read caption, will vote at next meeting.

2. Samey-same.

IV. Consent Agenda.

Councilman Sevier pulled items 5&6.

Rest passed 7-0. Items included changing the AG lot at 3097 and 205 to Commercial and allowing Auto Repair facilities in downtown with SUP.

5. $800,000 contract awarded for Discovery Blvd Extension.

6. $650,000 contract awarded for water line replacement.


V. Appointments.

1. P&Z Vice Chair Connie Jackson. Variances for McDonald's approved, surgery center variances approved.

2. Zebra Mussels are causing trouble. They get into water sources and mess all sorts of things up. Can't live with 'em, can't kill 'em.

Water folks have tried chemicals, filters, and magic and nothing has worked to rid us of this tiny beast!

As a result our available water supply is reduced and voluntary water conservation is being requested.

- 40 minutes later -

Discussion ended.

Basically, we're up a creek without a paddle and a boat-load (figuratively and literally) of Dreissena polymorpha.

3. State legislation to "help" the Zoo get sold water from the city instead of AquaTexas. No real update, it's still floating around the halls of the State Capitol.

VI. Public Hearing Items.

1. "Big to do" about moving a front yard fence. Passed 6-0 with no council discussion.

VIII. Site Plans/Plats.

1. Gonna Upgrayedd the old McDonald's. Passed 6-0.

2. Rockwall Surgery Center is expanding and needs variances. Passed 6-0.

IX. City Manger's Report.

Comments from City Manger Julie Couch, Council members Sevier and Nielsen, and Mayor Cecil:

CIP committee convening, Ralph Hall turn lane open, Oct 2012 completion for 740, John King overpass on schedule, audit report "fabulous", no employee pay raise for 2 years, same 3 false alarms at harbor, average response time for fire department has gone up (construction played a major part in that.)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

But what kind of BIKE was it?!?


Date: April 4, 2011


FROM: Sgt. Jeff Welch

Public Information Officer

Rockwall Police Department

“Rockwall Police Search for Speeding Motorcyclist”

Rockwall, Texas – On Monday, April 4, 2011, just after midnight, Rockwall Police were attempting to stop a speeding motorcyclist on Westbound IH 30. After accelerating rapidly to speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour, the driver abruptly stopped the motorcycle on IH 30 approximately one mile West of Horizon Road and fled on foot down an embankment towards the shoreline of Lake Ray Hubbard. A foot search was conducted and officers were unable to locate the suspect. Based on information developed at the scene, it was believed the suspect fled into the water in an attempt to evade capture. Using Search and Rescue Units from the Garland Fire Department, Dallas Fire Department, and Rockwall Police Department, a thorough land search was conducted with no results. Additionally, personnel from Dallas Fire Department’s Swift Water Rescue team conducted a search from a boat with no results. At approximately 4:45 A.M., the driver’s family was contacted by the suspect. An on-duty supervisor confirmed that the suspect was ok by contacting the suspect’s family member who spoke directly to him. No further water search will be necessary.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Rockwall City Council 21 March

First meeting on the internets! Streaming audio was Rockwall's initial foray into the world of 1's and 0's moving into your PC at the speed of light!

III. Proclamations.

3. (I missed the first one as I was a few minutes late, but our Chief of Police received an award for being the antithesis of the LAPD.)

1 & 2. Barbara Coleson and Claudette Hatfield Day was declared for two ladies who have worked hard for downtown for many years.

Executive Actions included acquiring right of way, spending money and appointing the CIP committee.

IV. Consent Agenda.

Councilman Sevier pulled items 2 & 3.

The rest approved 7-0.

2. Mowing service contract, Councilman Sevier confirmed the contract renewal did not go out for bid and cost an additional $28,000. Passed 6-1, Sevier opposed.

3. HVAC replacement contract bid acceptance - not lowest bid, but lower bids did not meet requirements.

V. Appointments.

1. P&Z Chair Herbst presented 2 items. The first was to amend the Downtown Zoning district to allow Auto Repair, Minor so that Archer's can remain downtown - after he is granted an SUP.

The second was a change to a zoning (somewhere) to change an agriculture zoned area to a PD (single family). Opposition from folks because of the density. Item was continued.

2. Annual Financial Audit. Tax revenue up a little. "We are in the eye of the economic storm." And as anyone who has lived through a hurricane will tell you, the eye is the halfway point between destruction! We did about average compared against the four cities in comparison.

Audit available here.

3. Fella from Rockwall Surgery Center wants to expand, but first has to have city approve an offsite parking arrangement with Rockwall High School. Sound complicated? No. Made complicated? Yeah. But approved 6-0. (Mayor Pro Tem Farris left at some point.)

VI. Public Hearing Items.

1. Request for a zoning change for an area at 549 and 205. Wants to make an area zoned as AG into Commercial (or General Retail). Surrounding area is residential, and there is some opposition from neighbors (including a lawsuit to prevent claimed violation of deed restrictions.)

LOTS of discussion.

In the end, council moved ahead to rezone to General Retail.

2. Zoning change or the Downtown District to allow for Auto Repair, Minor.

See previous blogs for info. I can't possibly write about it for the 10th time - especially on a Sunday evening.

Lots of support, not sure if any opposition.

Passed 6-0.

1. Items delayed the LRE water rate increase. Passed 6-0.

2. Resolution to call for public hearing regarding LRE water. Passed 6-0.

3. Ammendment to Unified Development Code to allow for congregate care facilities. Similar to assisted living facilities without medical assistance or personal care.

Talk Talk by Talk Talk

Tabled for 30 days.